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Geodesic Dome Materials Answered

My friends and I plan on building a geodesic dome at a small park, but we're not sure what materials to use. Our criteria are:

  • it needs to go up fast
  • it would be nice if it was semi-portable
  • it needs to be cheap
  • it needs to be secure enough that it can't be vandalized/removed

Suggestions, please? Thank you!


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NachoMahma (author)2008-07-20

. If it's just for display or a small shelter, then wood or PVC should do a good job. If kids will be climbing on it, I'd suggest metal pipe. . #4 is going be next to impossible unless you throw out #3. Make it cheap enough that you can afford to lose it.

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user

Nah he just has to throw out touching it, simply make it out of razor pipe, which is pipes with razor wire tack welded in strips over it, to move it they burrow under and have a harness system, then they walk around underneath..

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user

But it's just not jerkish enough...

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user

That's not actually a bad idea...

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user

It could have military applications... for kid wars...

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westfw (author)2008-07-20

How big, and how "fast" did you want it to go up? The burning man folk have done a lot on portability, but they're still talking (I think) an hour or so to set up a small dome rather than minutes. There may be ways to leave a dome "partially assembled" that would speed things up. The material of choice seems to be metal electrical conduit, which is easy to cut, easy to bend/flatten, and pretty cheap. Note however, that this makes a tent-like dome suitable for covering with fabric and NOT a play-structure-like dome suitable for climbing on, nor something tough enough to resist much effort toward vandalism...

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user

Thanks! I'm going to have to go look at the prices on electric conduit and PVC, because so far those seem like the best options. I suppose that I should have mentioned earlier that we were planing on doing the tent-style thing. I'd like the dome to go up in under a few hours. I just want all finished in one day, really. And thanks for the link -- that's the site I've been using!

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user

. If ppl won't be climbing on it, EMT (electrical metallic tubing) is cheaper and easier to work with than rigid conduit (RMC or GRC). See Types of Conduit

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